The Data Chief | Episode 78

Three Must-Read Data and Analytics Books with Dr. Barb Wixom, Vin Vashishta, and Asha Saxena

Dr. Barb Wixom

Principal Research Scientist

MIT Sloan School of Management

Vin Vashishta


VS Squared Consulting

Asha Saxena

Founder & CEO

Women Leaders In Data & AI (WLDA)

Current EpisodeEP78: Three Must-Read Data and Analytics Books with Dr. Barb Wixom, Vin Vashishta, and Asha Saxena

Episode Overview

It’s that time of year again. On this episode of The Data Chief, Cindi dives into three of the hottest book recommendations for data and analytics leaders and sits down with Dr. Barb Wixom, author of Data is Everybody’s Business, Vin Vashishta, author of From Data to Profit, and Asha Saxena, author of The AI Factor.

Key Moments:

  • Introducing Dr. Barb Wixom (2:10)
  • Barb’s desire to continue helping people in the data industry (2:57) (Barb)
  • The different types of organizational leaders (8:21) (Barb)
  • Creating value from data (10:50) (Barb)
  • The selling framework (16:42) (Barb)
  • A financial services case study (21:56) (Barb)
  • Introducing Vin Vashishta (27:18) (Vin)
  • The importance of companies having a single playbook (28:08) (Vin)
  • Benefits of a value-based approach (32:52) (Vin)
  • Starting with a problem statement (34:58) (Vin)
  • When a lack of data literacy becomes problematic (38:46) (Vin)
  • Driving culture change (40:30) (Vin)
  • Introducing Asha Saxena (46:12)
  • What is Women Leaders in Data and AI? (48:27) (Asha)
  • The four-quadrant framework for deploying AI (52:11) (Asha)
  • Case Study: How an Animal Shelter leveraged AI (55:44) (Asha)
  • How to use AI ethically and responsibly (59:32) (Asha)

Key Quotes:

It's important for companies to have a single playbook, and that's what's been missing. We have technology teams on one side. We have frontline organizations on a different side. We have C-level leaders. They don't speak the same language, especially when it comes to technology, and we now live in a multi technology environment.

If you find those kinds of organizations where there is a recognition and an importance around value creation for data, then you absolutely will find the management of value, the measurement of value, [and] the reporting on value.

I got in the habit of being a academia for the last 12 years, and so my thought was how can I take [these] frameworks and methodologies and [share] it in a way that the business leaders can understand the technology and really develop a savviness around how to engage with technologists?



About Dr. Barb Wixom

Dr. Barb Wixom is a Principal Research Scientist at the Massachusetts’s Institute of Technology Sloan School of Management Center for IS Research (CISR). Dr. Wixom directs and conducts academic research that targets the challenges of senior level executives. Her research focuses on how organizations effectively generate value using data assets.

Prior to CISR, Dr. Wixom was a tenured faculty member at the University of Virginia’s (UVA) McIntire School of Commerce for fifteen years where she taught courses in data management and business analytics. Dr. Wixom is a two-time recipient of the UVA All-University Teaching Award (2002, 2010), which recognizes professors’ teaching excellence and particularly those professors who inspire and motivate students. This honor is especially meaningful to Dr. Wixom because she earned her undergraduate degree at the University of Virginia.

She authored her new book Data is Everybody’s Business (MIT Press, September 2023) to inspire workers across organizations to engage in data monetization. She actively works to encourage women, young people, and underrepresented populations to learn about data and pursue data-related careers.

About Vin Vashishta

Vin Vashishta is an AI advisor and founder of V Squared. For the last 8 years, he has been recognized as a thought leader in the data and AI domain. He is a LinkedIn Top Voice and Gartner Ambassador.

Vin is the author of From Data To Profit (Wiley). It’s the playbook for monetizing data and AI, to help businesses unlock the value trapped in their data lake houses, warehouses, and teams.

He has worked with over 25 clients, from Fortune 100s to SMEs, to develop data and AI strategies. And he has built and delivered SaaS, data, and AI products with 8-9 figure ARRs.

For the last 8 years, Vin has been recognized as a thought leader in the data and AI domain, is a LinkedIn Top Voice, Gartner Ambassador, and has been an influencer for companies like IBM, Intel, and SAP. He has more than 25 years in strategy, leadership, software engineering, and applied machine learning.

About Asha Saxena

Asha Saxena is the Founder and CEO of Women Leaders in Data and AI (WLDA), an organization bringing senior leaders together with a mission to create an impactful digital world with parity and equity. 

Asha is also a partner at CEO Coaching International, a leading coaching firm for growth-focused CEOs and entrepreneurs, where we follow a practical and proven methodology to help CEOs and their teams perform at their very best and achieve their business goals.

As a Board Advisor and an Adjunct Professor at Columbia University, she teaches graduate classes on Management Consulting, Entrepreneurship and Big Data Analytics. She has served a four-year term as Entrepreneur-in-Residence at Columbia Business School.

Asha is a Board of Director for several for-profit companies. She served as CEO of ACULYST Corp. Healthcare Data Analytics Firm, built an eCommerce Company and served as a CEO of Future Technologies Inc., an international data management solutions firm for twenty years.